'Idol' hopeful Matthew Farmer's Iraq story was 'all lies'
UPI News Service, 02/03/2013
"American Idol" season 12 contestant Matthew Farmer said he lied about receiving a traumatic brain injury while serving in Iraq.
The contestant said he has quit his involvement in the contest now that his fabricated tale has been revealed, The Hollywood Reporter reported Friday.
During his audition, Farmer told judges Randy Jackson, Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj and Keith Urban he sustained a life-threatening brain injury from an improvised explosive device while serving in Iraq. To make matters worse, he said the medication he took made him sterile, making the birth of his young daughter a miracle.
"It was ALL lies," Farmer wrote in a statement to guardianofvalor.com. "I in fact HAVE lied since a younger age and had a problem with it. I am coming out and making a statement (even though I was instructed not to) because I DO want to come clean."
Farmer initially denied making the claim, saying the show's producers heavily edited his audition clips to create the tale, The Hollywood Reporter said.
A fellow soldier who roomed with Farmer said he didn't receive a brain injury in combat, but from an overdose of acne medication and alcohol.
"I was a sniper section leader attached to his company and lived in the same room with him until he was Medevaced from Ramadi because he got drunk while he was taking Accutane," the soldier wrote to stolenvalor.com. "He was never involved in one single direct fire engagement, was never wounded, and made up this whole lie to try and make his story sound good to 'American Idol.' "